Executive Summary


For this project, my team and I created an application primarily focused on sharing artwork called TAP.


March 2022 - April 2022


GDD(Goal Directed Design)


My role in this was to gather research, participate in interviews and create sections of the wireframe


Kai Laborde
Anneli Nurmi
Yanxing Pan
Andrea De Leon


Imagine an app that provides you with every feature needed for an artist you successfully build a name for themselves, free of all the hassles and complications that come with it. What if instead of needing several apps to do commissions, posting, and messaging, you only needed one? That is the idea behind TAP. My name is Kai Laborde, me and my groupmates Anneli Nurmi, Yanxing Pan, Andrea De Leon created TAP over the course of two months together.
To achieve the best possible outcome for this project we applied the use of Goal-Directed Design. GDD is a design process created by Alan Cooper that aids designers in understanding the goals, needs, and motivations of users. This is all in order to create a superior product. The phases of GDD include Research, Modeling, Requirements, Framework, Refinement, and Support. This is my first foray into Goal-directed design as a class project.


The research phase is used to gather information on possible users for our app. This phase could be considered the most important since it gave us the basis for how to build our application. This phase consisted of a kickoff meeting, literature review, competitive audit, and user interviews. Usually, the research phase also includes stakeholder interviews, however, we don’t have any so those can not be done.


For the kickoff meeting, we made up a list of assumption statements. The purpose of these is to list down what we hypothesized our problems would be a how we could solve them to achieve our goal. We also used this phase to create our problem statement, which is the goal we had in mind with TAP.

Literature Review

During the Literature Review, our team researched the product and we found articles that correlated with the goals of our application. This gave us a deeper understanding of the frustrations people have when sharing their artwork online.

Competitive Audit

The purpose of a Competitive audit is used to compare existing versions, prototypes, or competitors of a product. We studied several social media apps to understand what made them different from each other and the features that they each offered. We chose apps such as Instagram, Pinterest, Artfol, DeviantArt, and Pixiv since many artists use these apps for posting.

This process helped us understand the important features needed to make a social media app successful. It also helped us discover what we could do to improve upon the status quo.

Stakeholder Interview

As stated previously this phase wasn’t done by my group since we don’t have any stakeholders. However, each of us did a form that put us in the perspective of a stakeholder. Before forming groups everyone in the class did presentations on their idea for a project. Those who weren’t presenting then gave ratings to the presentations.

User Interview

The importance of this phase comes from the input from different types of users. To make sure the design of our app was as best as it could possibly be, we needed to understand the goals, behaviors, and attitudes real-life users had. The first step of this process was creating our persona hypothesis.

The persona hypothesis is used to identify “different kinds of users” for the first time (Cooper, Reimann, and Cronin 2014). A persona is a profile of someone who represents a target audience group.

We started by brainstorming what our main persona would be based on our previous research and the kickoff meeting. Our persona hypothesis was that we would have three different types of users. Our two primary users would-be artists who wanted to sell art and artists who wanted to show their skills for fun. The secondary users would be non-artists.

For the interviews, we sent messages to several discord servers, once we got a response we would set up a time to meet. After all five of the interviews, our group met up and discussed our findings on an affinity map and grouped them into different categories such as what the participants’ goals were, what they liked, didn’t like, and any other extra observations. We were able to hear constantly mentioned features in our interviews, the ability to send direct messages, timeline, and all-in-one apps. However one of the biggest concerns our participants had was the timeline algorithms on social media, which made it harder for the artist users to get recognition. Taking all the information we culminated thus far, we started the process of creating our personas.


In the end, we ended up with only two personas based on the goals of each interviewed user. A persona is a profile of someone who represents a target audience group. These two personas were the primary, Skye Sarina, an artist, and the secondary, Lopo Simiyu, a non-artist. To reach these outcomes two members worked on each persona, looking back on any previous information we gathered from the research phase.

We then wrote a story around each of the personas to give more context to the type of users we are describing, their goals, and their behavior. To finish it off, we organized the information and found random pictures online to give a face to these hypothetical people.


To find out the requirements for our app, the whole group had to think of a context scenario to put our personas through. A context scenario is basically a story that we make up for the personas using the product in an optimal way. This is important for Goal-Directed Design because it helps designers give stakeholders an idea of how a product would be used in day-to-day life.

Secondly, we created a requirements list based on the feedback we received in previous steps. A requirements list is important because it helps the group know what is necessary to include in the wireframe, prototype, and final product.


​Once we made a list of requirements the website would need we began making a prototype for the app. To create the initial wireframe we used Miro. Wireframing is important to GDD because it gives everyone involved an idea of how the app will work in action, including what links to which page and how these transition into each other. First, we started out with the main page and the sign-up page. Then we created the secondary pages such as Direct messages, commissions, topics, and settings. Finally, we plotted each of the pages and organized how each page would work together.


The point of the refinement phase was to create a polished, functioning version of the app. For this version we used Figma. What made Figma better for this version was its ability to add flows, flows allowed us to connect the pages in a way that would realistically replicate how the app was meant to be navigated. To refine the initial designs we organized some interviews to act as user testing. Each of the people we interviewed found no problems with our design so for the final process we just added images and organized the pages a bit.


In short from this project I learned how to approach product design through the use of GDD. I also learned how to organize my time and communicate with a team of people better. There were many challenges my team faced such as how to schedule meetings with each other outside of school, and how to find people to interview who could give us multiple perspectives. ​Honestly, I was satisfied with how our final product turned out, however, we did have a bit of trouble organizing the pages. This resulted in creating the app take longer than necessary. To reflect on this mistake I would make sure there was better communication between the team so that each segment was work on by a specific member.

Final Prototype